A new series!
Suppose there were 12-year-old twins, a boy and girl named John and Abigail Templeton. Let's say John was pragmatic and played the drums, and Abigail was theoretical and solved cryptic crosswords. Now suppose their father was a brilliant, if sometimes confused, inventor. And suppose that another set of twins-adults-named Dean D. Dean and Dan D. Dean, kidnapped the Templeton twins and their ridiculous dog in order to get their father to turn over one of his genius (sort of) inventions. Yes, I said kidnapped. Wouldn't it be fun to read about that? Oh please. It would so. Luckily for you, this is just the first in a series perfect for boys and girls who are smart, clever, and funny (just like the twins), and enjoy reading adventurous stories (who doesn't? ).
The soft blue cover was the first thing that caught my attention about this middle grade book. Charming, witty and quirky, this was a delight! The Lemony Snicket-type story is told by a slightly obnoxious narrator who speaks directly to the reader and offers silly quizzes at the end of each chapter. The twins and their father are odd but interesting and likeable. They each have their own distinct personalities, interests and abilities but are still united as a family. When bumbling kidnappers take their father, the children use their unusual talents to try to rescue him.
The illustrations and drawings in the margins, really makes the story. There were extra fun elements like sketches of their ideas and inventions, and crossword puzzles. I loved the design but unfortunately for me, I couldn't see several of the illustrations or the copy written on those pages. The arc (ebook) version I had kept freezing up and was so frustrating!
I still enjoyed this story and look forward to more of the series from this debut author. Entertaining for kids but fun for adults too!
Thank you to Edelweiss for an arc (ebook) to review.
Release date: 4/1/12
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Pages: 224 (hardcover)
Type: Middle grade